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Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Oh What a Night - For Wine on Cape Cod

Me with Joseph Car (C) and Chris Wilson
 Charlie’s weekly wine-ings

 A few weeks ago, Jan and I had a night off from our Cape Cod Bed and Breakfast and used it to see Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons in concert at the Melody Tent in Hyannis, Massachusetts. I first saw him in August of 1964 in Chicago; I guess we both have changed a little since then. Frankie Valli’s song, “Oh! What a Night”, came to mind as I was enjoying a very special wine tasting last Wednesday evening. It was a perfect Cape Cod summer night on the patio at the Belfry Bistro. Cellar 55 Wine Merchants co-hosted this special tasting of the wines from Joseph Carr Napa Valley, and Joseph was in attendance.

I have talked about formal and informal tastings and last week, even a “tasting in a bag”, but this was very special. Joseph Carr himself was presenting his wines. You really appreciate a wine more when you meet the wine maker and feel their enthusiasm for each wine. A representative from a distributor or retailers can give the facts about a wine, but only the winemaker can give you their passion that goes into each vintage. Joseph Carr entertainingly told his story of how he accidentally became a wine steward in his college days. He was a very bad waiter, but the restaurant owner liked him and made him the wine steward. That set the course for the next twenty years of his successful career as sommelier and international wine industry executive. The establishment of his signature winery is the culmination of lifetime of experience and the fulfillment of his dream. He also lives part of the year on Cape Cod and part of the year in Napa Valley.  To us Cape Cod wine lovers, it sounds like the best of all worlds.

During the course of the evening we tasted the 2008 Joseph Carr Sauvignon Blanc, the 2008 Josh Cellars Chardonnay, the 2008 Joseph Carr Pinot Noir, and the 2007 Joseph Carr Cabernet Sauvignon. Josh is a second label dedicated to his father who was called Josh by his friends. After the official tasting, Joseph also shared with a few of us a very special bottle of his newly released 2008 Joseph Carr Sonoma Coast Chardonnay Reserve.

On the back the bottle of each of his Joseph Carr labels, he has a simple message “SHARE”. At this tasting he graciously shared his wines, his knowledge and his passion. Take every chance you get, to attend a tasting that feature the winemaker; it will greatly enhance your experience.

Happy wine-ing


Charlie Preus, the Innkeeper’s Assistant and Wine Steward at the 1750 Inn at Sandwich Center, Sandwich, Cape Cod, Massachusetts

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